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Sunday, October 09, 2005

Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned

The latest Prodigy album title seems somehow apt after today's experience at the Hamburg horse track.

So we were out to dinner with management on Friday night and I got a look at the confirmed starter list for Sunday, and I saw that my man Jeremy Powers was on there. I had a full jones on to see him 'cause it's been awhile since I saw any North Americans over here. JP was here the same time as me last year so we shared a few Belgian ass-kickings together. As the only two NorAms on the race today, we were definitely outnumbered in a pretty massive field, but we charged pretty hard and finished pretty respectably (I think) in 11th and 12th spots. Hence, certainly not outgunned.

Because this is the Stevens home race the full team was present and did a really good job of packing the top ten (1,2,5,6,7,8,10 I think), so I didn't really feel that any obstructive team tactics were the order of the day. Basically that this means I felt pretty happy to work with Jeremy to better our placings instead of being a jerk.

I got my good start position today and had a rocket start, which was being led out by Austria's latest fast-start sensation PeterP. When you have a gap on Heule and van den Berghe after the first 100m, you know you're going quick. I found the top ten really quickly and hung out near the middle of that for a bit, which honestly didn't feel that bad, but the pace got ratcheted up near the end of lap 1 and I came off with a couple other guys. That was pretty much the race right there with JP, me and Fabian riding together for most of the time trying to keep our gap on the chase group behind.

Good fast course, lots of deep rutted sand passages and some nice corners to keep things interesting. Small time gaps again today, and I am starting to feel really good about how my form is progressing for Nationals.

Until next time,


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